Folk / Medieval / Metal / Rock

Fusion genre of heavy metal music and traditional folk music that developed in Europe during the 1990s. It is characterised by the widespread use of folk instruments and, to a lesser extent, traditional singing styles (for example, Dutch Heidevolk, Danish Sylvatica and Spanish Stone of Erech).

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  • Orphaned Land

    Orphaned Land is an Israeli progressive metal/folk metal band, formed in 1991 under the name Resurrection (changing their name in 1992 to the current name), that combines Jewish, Arabic, and other West Asian influences. The band has gone through several lineup changes over the years, but has retained two of the founding members, Kobi Farhi (vocals) and Uri Zelcha (bass). They are joined by Matan Shmuely (drums), Chen Balbus (guitar/keyboard) who replaced co-founding member Matti Svatizky in 2012, and Idan Amsalem (guitars/bouzouki) who replaced co-founding member Yossi Sassi in early 2014. Their lyrics promote a message of peace and unity, particularly between the three main Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Islam, and Christianity).

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  • Subway to Sally

    Subway to Sally is a rock band that was founded in Potsdam, Germany, in the early 1990s. Their music has clear folk and medieval influences, later also with gothic and metal elements added to the mix. With their continuous inclusion of oriental sounds and elements of classical music (noted for instance by the use of the arrangements of the backup vocals) and the use of instruments less frequently seen in metal bands, such as bagpipes, shawm, violin, hurdy-gurdy and lute, the band has acquired the label of medieval metal. They have released 12 studio albums, two live albums and two live DVDs. Their fame is mainly in the German-speaking countries, having played only a handful of concerts outside of that. The very first concert given by Subway to Sally was held in September 1990. The band then consisted of Ingo Hampf, Bodenski, Simon, Coni (trumpet) and Guido (drums). Their first appearance onstage in the constellation with which they later recorded their first album (Album 1994), was given in the Potsdamer "Stube" in January 1992. The group had decided on needing a fiddle to complete the sound, something which brought Frau Schmitt (Silke Volland) to the band, who in turn introduced Eric Fish (Erik Hecht) on the bagpipes.

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  • Finntroll

    Finntroll is a folk metal band from Helsinki, Finland. They combine elements of black metal and folk metal. Finntroll's lyrics are mostly in Swedish, the only exception being the song "Madon Laulu" on Visor Om Slutet. Finntroll's original singer, Katla, decided to use Swedish over Finnish since he was part of a Swedish-speaking minority in Finland and the sound of the language seemed to better suit the band's "trollish" outfit. Despite several vocalist changes, this tradition has continued. According to bandmembers Vreth and Skrymer, they took their name from an old Finnish legend where Swedish priests coming to Finland had an encounter with a wild-looking man who killed most of their party. The survivors came back bearing the tale of the Finn-Troll. Finntroll's lyrics mainly deal with legends and tales revolving around the fictional Troll-King "Rivfader" and the trolls fighting against the Christians who entered their lands and spread their beliefs. A recurring theme is the story of two priests named "Aamund" and "Kettil". The first three full-length albums feature a rather short but fierce song about the two men who constantly get themselves into trouble with the trolls, only to get beaten up and mutilated over and over again by the wrathful followers of Rivfader. To date, the band's discography includes six full-length albums, a live album and two EPs. Their newest studio album Blodsvept was released on March 22, 2013. In 2014, the band released the live album, Natten Med De Levande Finntroll ("Night of the Living Finntroll").

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  • Korpiklaani

    The band underwent another evolution in 2003, and "Shaman" became "Korpiklaani" (with only Järvelä and drummer Samu Ruotsalainen remaining from the last "Shaman" lineup), with the music style to a more conventional folk metal with folk/thrash vocals instead of yoiking. Shamániac had already featured a strong resemblance to the future Korpiklaani style. In fact, the song, "Vuola lávlla", has the same music as the Korpiklaani song, "Beer Beer". The change in name was accompanied by a change in the music. The traditional yoik vocals and the use of the Sámi language were dropped while the synthesizer was replaced with real folk instruments. Jonne Järvelä credits his work with Finntroll as the catalyst for the shift in emphasis from folk to metal. Their song lyrics are often related to alcohol and partying. According to Jonne Järvelä, Korpiklaani's music would be seen as "old people's music with heavy metal guitars" in Finland. There has been some collaboration between Korpiklaani and Finntroll, as Samu Ruotsalainen of Finntroll provided session drums for their debut album Spirit of the Forest and Järvelä provided the yoiking for the title track of Finntroll's album Jaktens Tid. Juha Jyrkäs has written some Finnish lyrics to Korpiklaani and from 2011 lyrics are written by poet Tuomas Keskimäki, he write lyrics in the old Finnish "kalevalametre". The name Korpiklaani means "Forest Clan" in the Finnish language. In spoken language "korpi" means dark old forest. In biology it refers to boreal forest appearing on moist moraine soils, characterized by dense growth of spruce and a deep layer of moss as undergrowth. In September 2011 Korpiklaani announced that Jaakko "Hittavainen" Lemmetty would be leaving the band due to personal health issues which made the constant touring and recording impossible. First his replacement was violist Teemu Eerola and later, nowadays permanent member, Tuomas Rounakari. In 2013 accordion player Juho Kauppinen left Korpiklaani and new accordion player is Sami Perttula.

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  • Týr

    Týr (locally: [tʰʊɪːɹ]) is a Faroese heavy metal band. Their subject matter revolves almost entirely around Viking lore, mythology, and history, taking their name from the Norse god of law and justice. They signed a worldwide deal with Austria's Napalm Records in early 2006, while signed to the Faroese record label Tutl. In September of 2012, they signed a three album deal with Metal Blade Records. Before Týr, Heri Joensen and Gunnar H. Thomsen formed their first band, Cruiser, at the age of seventeen. Streymoy also played with them for a short while. They later changed their name to Wolfgang. Although neither band released any albums, Wolfgang, who are still active, recorded an undisclosed amount of songs that, according to Joensen, are "pretty much ready to release.

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  • Ensiferum

    Ensiferum (Latin ēnsiferum, n adj., meaning "sword bearing") is a Finnish folk metal band from Helsinki. The members of the band label themselves as "melodic folk metal." Ensiferum was founded in 1995 by Markus Toivonen (guitar), Sauli Savolainen (bass) and Kimmo Miettinen (drums). For the band's name, they took the Latin neuter gender adjective ensiferum, which means "sword bearer". In the next year, Jari Mäenpää was taken into the band as singer and second guitar-player. In 1997, the first demo was released, containing three songs. The highly stylized logo of Ensiferum has appeared on all of their releases. In 1998, Sauli and Kimmo left the band and were replaced by Jukka-Pekka Miettinen (Kimmo's little brother, then 14 years old) and Oliver Fokin. In January 1999, a second demo was recorded, which although it did not produce a recording deal, boosted the band's confidence. In November 1999 a third demo, "Hero in a Dream", was recorded, which was successful in obtaining a record deal with Spinefarm Records. The logo that appears on all the bands releases was designed for the third demo by Tuomas Tahvanainen, who also designed the logos for the earlier demos. In 2000, the band went into the studio to work on their first album, Ensiferum, which was released in August 2001. In the same year, Meiju Enho joined them as a keyboard-player.

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  • Eluveitie

    Eluveitie is a Swiss folk metal band from Winterthur, Zurich, founded by Chrigel Glanzmann. The band was formed in 2002 and their first EP, Vên, was released in 2003. Vên was a studio project of Glanzmann's, but its success led to the recruitment of a full band. They describe themselves as "The new wave of folk metal". The band then released a full-length album, Spirit, in June 2006. In November 2007, Eluveitie was signed by Nuclear Blast. The first product of the collaboration, Slania, was released in February 2008. The album peaked at number 35 in the Swiss charts and number 72 in the German charts. Eluveitie use traditional instruments amidst guitars and both clean and harsh vocals. The lyrics are often in the extinct ancient language Gaulish. The name of the band comes from graffiti on a vessel from Mantua (ca. 300 BC). The inscription in Etruscan letters reads eluveitie, which has been interpreted as the Etruscan form of the Celtic (h)elvetios (“the Helvetian”), presumably referring to a man of Helvetian descent living in Mantua.

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  • Alestorm

    Alestorm is a heavy metal band from Perth, Scotland. Their music is characterized by a pirate theme, and as a result they have been dubbed a "pirate metal" band by many critics and their fanbase. They refer to their genre as "True Scottish Pirate Metal". The band formed under the name Battleheart in 2004. After releasing two demos, they were signed by Napalm Records in 2007 and renamed themselves Alestorm. Their debut album was released on 25 January 2008. The band's third album, Back Through Time, was released in June 2011, and their latest record Sunset on the Golden Age was released in August 2014.

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  • Saltatio Mortis

    Saltatio Mortis is a German medieval metal group. The latin name means "dance of death"., it's an allusion to the Danse Macabre, and a motto of the band is: "He who dances does not die."

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  • Arkona

    Arkona (Russian: Аркона) is a Russian pagan metal band. Their lyrics are heavily influenced by Russian folklore and Slavic mythology, and their music incorporates several traditional Russian musical instruments. The name of the band "Arkona" refers to the last pagan Slavic city-castle.

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  • Ignis Fatuu

    Ignis Fatuu (lat. ignis fatuus - irrlicht) is an existing German medieval rock band with Alexander Trappe from Nuremberg. Founded in the year 2004. 2007 the band released their first promo CD with 5 songs. A year later, the band participated in the Mediaval festival, where they performed with bands such as Ingrimm, Arundo and Zwielicht. 2009 they released their debut album "Let there be light" after they signed a record deal with Danse Macabre Records.

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  • Nachtgeschrei

    Nachtgeschrei is a german folk metal / medieval rock band from Frankfurt am Main, founded 2006. The band was formed from the former members of the folk-rock band Black Sheep and the melodic death metal band Paimon. 2006 and 2007 appeared a promotional CD. On 2 May 2008 their debut album "Hoffnungsschimmer" was released by the label Massacre Records.

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  • Feuerschwanz

    Feuerschwanz is a german medieval rock band from the area of Erlangen, founded 2004. For the founding are Tobias Heindl, the violinist of the folk-rock band Fiddler's Green, and bassist Andre Left responsible. The band is a parody band like J.B.O., some members had already left the band, because they could not identify with the humorous concept.

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  • Brachmond

    Brachmond is a medieval rock band from Olching. Throaty vocals and sweet violin sounds are complemented by bagpipes and electric guitars. The Newcomer of the year 2016 and winner of Amper Slam Band Battles.

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